Larks (Alaudidae)

Black-crowned Sparrow-lark (Eremopterix nigriceps) - HBW 9, p. 572

French: Moinelette à front blanc German: Weißstirnlerche Spanish: Terrera Negrita
Other common names: Black-crowned Finch-lark, White-fronted/White-crested Sparrow-lark/Finch-lark

Taxonomy: Pyrrhalauda [sic] nigriceps Gould, 1839, São Tiago, Cape Verde Islands.
Relationships obscure. Sometimes placed in a superspecies with E. verticalis, E. signatus and E. leucopareia, but has also been considered to form a superspecies with E. leucotis on basis of male plumage patterns; alternatively, often regarded as closest to E. griseus. Geographical variation largely clinal, size increasing from W to E. Birds from Socotra described as race forbeswatsoni, but considered indistinguishable from melanauchen. Four subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution:

  • nigriceps (Gould, 1839) - Cape Verde Is.
  • albifrons (Sundevall, 1850) - Mauritania and Senegal E to Sudan (E to R Nile).
  • melanauchen (Cabanis, 1851) - E Sudan E to extreme S Iraq, Kuwait and C & S Arabian Peninsula, and S to Somalia and Socotra.
  • affinis (Blyth, 1867) - SE Iran E to Pakistan and NW India.